I remember starting out as a kid. We lived on the southeast corner of Dellavalle Avenue and Rush Street. I was an only child and though I had friends in school and the neighborhood, I often times created imaginary animals, creatures and places. We would travel (in my wondering and wandering mind) to deeply wooded forests where furry critters roamed; to deep canyons and valleys where towering waterfalls cascaded over rocky cliffs.
Dad’s crop dusting season had finally slowed and he announced we were going to the Old Timers Day Parade. But looking out my bedroom window I saw him loading strange things in the back of the big car. After a stop for donuts at Sno-White Drive-In, we found a spot near Dr. Daggett’s office to watch the parade.
After all the bands, floats and horses passed, we climbed back into the car. But instead of heading home, Dad, with Mom beside him, headed for the mountains. A half-hour later we passed a rickety building with some motorcycles out front. Dad said it was something called the 22-Mile House. From the back seat, I peeked over his shoulder at the odometer and later looked again to see if it was 22 miles to anywhere.
The road became steeper. Dad and Mom laughed when we passed the Coarsegold Inn. I guessed from their smiles that something funny had happened between them at the inn before I had been born. Later we drove through a small town called Oakhurst. Dad stopped at the Snowline Lodge so I could use the restroom. He showed me a big window that overlooked the valley below...